The Cotswolds have celebrated the world over for their honey-coloured villages, rolling green hills, and beautiful valleys. Their bucolic appeal is protected since the region is the largest Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in the UK. Covering nearly 800 square miles, there is so much to see and do in the Cotswolds. Here we list some of the very best activities.
1. Walking The Cotswold Way
You can explore the many stunning Cotswold villages by walking the 102-mile long-distance foot path known as The Cotswold Way. The route begins in Chipping Campden and ends in Bath Spa.
2. Visit Tewkesbury Abbey, Tewkesbury
Step back into medieval times at this great historic site, world-renowned for its architecture.
3. Climb Broadway Tower
Located in Broadway, Worcestershire, the greatest views of the Cotswolds can be seen from the top.
Take a stroll in Bourton-on-the-Water. Its five bridges that run across the river are an iconic Cotswold landmark.
5. Shop in Cheltenham Spa
Head down to The Promenade in Cheltenham and do some designer shopping. There’s also a John Lewis department store in the town.
6. Visit Blenheim Palace
Visit Blenheim Palace, a World Heritage Site, located in Woodstock, Oxfordshire. You can head inside the monumental country house and also explore its truly impressive gardens.
7. Head to The Roman Baths, Bath Spa
The Roman Baths are located in the city of Bath, Somerset. A temple was constructed on the site around 60CE and today it serves as a museum. It is one of the most popular historical attractions in the UK.
8. Step Back in Time at Sudeley Castle
Surrounded by a 1,200 acre estate, Sudeley Castle in Winchcombe was built in 1441 and has played a pivotal role in British history. It is the final resting place of Queen Catherine Parr (1512–1548), the sixth wife of Henry VIII.
9. Visit Gloucester Cathedral
Known as a central Harry Potter filming location, as well as being home to over 1,000 years of British history, Gloucester Cathedral provides a great day out for all the family.
10. Walk Amongst the Animals at Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens
Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens is home to over 260 different animals, which you can experience firsthand in the heart of the Cotswold countryside. The Park is also home to an incredible adventure playground. Around 350,000 people visit the Park and Gardens each year.
11. Visit Westonbirt, The National Arboretum
Managed by Forestry England, the Westonbirt Arboretum is one of the most incredible places in the Cotswolds and perhaps the most important arboretum in the United Kingdom. It boasts 15,000 tree specimens and many walking trails for all the family.
12. Chedworth Roman Villa
One of the largest Roman villas in Britain is located in the Cotswolds. Chedworth Roman Villa was occupied until the 4th century, then rediscovered 150 years ago. Visitors are transported back in time thanks to the latest digital technology on offer.
13. Hop on Board the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway
This incredible heritage railway runs along the Gloucestershire and Worcestershire border. A scenic trip, it covers 24 miles of beautiful Cotswold countryside.
14. Lacock Abbey, Lacock
Lacock is a village in Wiltshire. Its Abbey was originally founded in 1232 and then served as a nunnery for 300 years. Visitors may recognise it from the Harry Potter films, since the Abbey stood in as Hogwarts for two of the films in the franchise.
15. Arlington Row, Bibury
The most iconic Cotswold image is surely of Arlington Row in Bibury. Home to a row of 14th-century weavers cottages, you’re sure to look upon the most picturesque spot in England.